A visit to Key West is not complete until you have had some of the most enticing foods that the city has to offer. With over 300 restaurants on the tiny island, visitors certainly will not go hungry.
I love taking food tours when I travel to discover the local food scene, so it was only natural during my trip to Key West for me to take a tour with Key West Food Tours. I journeyed off of the beaten path and into some of Key West’s best local restaurants.
Cuban Cuisine at El Siboney
You cannot talk about the food scene in Key West without mentioning Cuban cuisine.
The first stop on the tour was to El Siboney, arguably the best Cuban restaurant in Key West. Originally known as La Lechonara, El Siboney has been serving up delicious and affordable traditional Cuban meals since the 1980’s.
Our group shared several plates of roast pork drizzled in mojo marinade, white rice, black beans, maduros, and Cuban bread while we learned some basics about Cuban cuisine.
One interesting thing that I learned on the tour was the reasoning behind why some Cubans use white vs. yellow rice. I also learned how to properly dip bread in Cuban coffee and how to make plantains three different ways: as plantain chips, maduros, and tostones.
I always find it interesting that Cuban food in America seems to be much more extravagant and flavorful than the food I ate during my trip to Cuba. El Siboney did a great job of taking a classic Cuban dish and bringing out all of the exquisite flavors.
Fish Tacos at Bad Boy Burrito
The next stop on the tour was to Bad Boy Burrito, a street-style Mexican restaurant that I had on my radar long before I made my way down to the Florida Keys.
Our tour included delicious Guy Fieri approved fish tacos. Everything about the taco that I ate at Bad Boy Burrito was fresh from the fish that was caught that very morning right down to the homemade tortillas.
I love fish tacos and the tacos at Bad Boy Burrito were finger-licking good.
If you still need another reason to visit Bad Boy Burrito the creator of the restaurant, Chris Otten, is a James-Beard honored chef.
Rum Runners at The Rum Bar
I believe that it is always a good time for four things: good food, doughnuts, wine, and rum.
Stopping for a quick drink at The Rum Bar, I had the opportunity to indulge myself by drinking a nice cool Rum Runner.
Drinking a Rum Runner while you are in Key West is a must-do. Comprised of pineapple juice, orange juice, blackberry liqueur, banana liqueur, light rum, dark rum, and grenadine, the Rum Runner reminds me a lot of Rum Swizzles that I drank in Bermuda.
If you are looking for a great place to get a Rum Runner in Key West, look no further than the Rum Bar.
Conch Fritters at Blue Macaw Island Eats & Bar
The next stop on the tour was to Blue Macaw Island Eats & Bar in Bahama Village, Key West’s oldest and most multicultural neighborhood.
Blue Macaw is known for their conch fritters, a favorite food of Key West residents. The flavor of conch fritters is comparable to a clam and calamari mixture. The fritters are not overly fishy and they have just the right amount of spice.
While devouring my conch fritters, our guide explained the history of conches and why locals love them so much. He told us that all of the conch in Key West comes directly from the Bahamas due to their endangered status in Florida waters.
If you want to try conch fritters during your trip to Key West, then Blue Macaw is the place to go!
Key Lime Pie at Blue Heaven
One thing that visitors MUST try during their trip to Key West is Key Lime Pie.
If you are looking for what some locals refer to as the best Key Lime Pie on the island, then you must head over to Blue Heaven.
I discovered on this tour that true Key Lime Pie (unlike the one I had in Miami) must have a meringue topping made from whipped egg whites.
One thing that I loved about Blue Heaven’s Key Lime Pie was that in addition to not having too much sugar, it was also light and airy, and I did not feel guilty after consuming it.
In addition to their Key Lime Pie, our guide told us that the food and cocktails at Blue Heaven are amazing, despite the casual atmosphere. They also have live music daily, which reminded me of the food scene in Austin, Texas.
Rum at Key West Distilling
The tour concluded with a rum, gin and vodka tasting at Key West Distilling.
Our tour guide, Nick led us into the distillery and talked us through the process that is involved in order to produce spirits. I found it interesting that making spirits requires much less equipment than producing wine or beer.
We sampled all of the different drinks that the company creates including white rum, dark rum, spiced rum, vodka, and gin. My favorite out all of all of the spirits we tried was the dark rum.
I really enjoyed taking the Southernmost Food Tour with Key West Food Tours.
I sampled some of the best food and drinks that the island had to offer. I also learned about the history of the island from a native Conch.
I highly recommend that anyone visiting the area take a tour with Key West Food Tours to not only enjoy the foods that I ate but also to get tips on other amazing things to do and eat on the island!